Positive Thinking versus Wishful Thinking


A co-worker of mine is a devotee of The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, and other similar new-age success systems.  I read many of these books myself for tips and techniques.  I figure, if nothing else, you never know where an idea will come from that will make all the difference!

My co-worker, though, is confusing a positive thinking with wishful thinking.  She’s having financial difficulties.  Her solution is spending a lot of time crafting and repeating positive statements and affirmations.

Of course it greatly helps in your journey to have a positive, can-do attitude.  Without it you may miss opportunities and ideas that will help you succeed.  A positive, can-do attitude will help you bounce back a little faster when you hit obstacles.  With a positive, can-do attitude it’ll be easier for you to find the good—the benefit—in going through a few bumps in the road.  With a positive, can-do attitude it’s easier to retain your equilibrium and balance when you hit a rough patch.  With a positive, can-do attitude, on good days you feel super-charged and on “bad” days you still find ways to make some sort of forward movement.

Wishful thinking, on the other hand, is an idle activity.  Sometimes, wishing sounds like a positive attitude but the difference is no action is ever taken.  Wishful thinking is all talk, all planning, but no action, no execution of any part of those plans.  Without action, there will be no achievement no matter how wishful your thinking and hoping.

That’s the case with my co-worker.  She isn’t doing anything to help herself.  She keeps saying that her positive thinking and affirmations will bring the desired results to her.  She doesn’t realize that she has to take some action by going out to find her dreams.  She has to get busy and take steps along the road so she can meet up with her success.


Positive thinking is holding your vision in your mind, thinking positive thoughts and repeating affirmations, doing what you can each day to advance toward your dreams and goals, and being open to tweaks that will be needed along the way.

We all indulge in wishing, it’s a normal and natural part of being human.  Many people who have achieved their dreams have started out with wishful thinking.  The difference is the people who achieved success eventually took action, took steps regularly toward their dreams.

Your homework today is to think about your journey to your goals and dreams.  Are you wishful thinking or are you putting some action behind those wishes?  If you’re wishful thinking, take a look at the first step.  Break it into small, easily doable pieces.  Choose one of those pieces and do it.


Congratulations!  You did it!

I’m so proud of you!  I knew you could do it!

Your Friend,


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